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Casework Specialist, Youth Authority (9911)

Casework Specialist, Youth Authority

California State Personnel Board Specification

  • Schematic Code: XR30
  • Class Code: 9911
  • Established: 10/19/1957
  • Revised: 09/01/1998
  • Title Changed: 08/08/1979


Under general direction, in a Youth Authority facility, to provide specialized casework, clinical, diagnostic, and intensive treatment services for wards and residents; maintain order and supervise the conduct of wards and residents; provide functional casework supervision to the treatment team staff; protect and maintain the safety of persons and property; and do other related work.

Typical Tasks

Performs intensive individual casework services and group work counseling and psychotherapy with an assigned caseload; prepares sociopsychiatric case history information for use in diagnosis and participates in diagnostic formulations; interprets the social aspects of mental and emotional disturbances and delinquency to parents, relatives, parole officers, and others interested in the welfare of wards and residents; acquaints other staff members with the social service role in diagnosis and treatment and works as a team member with other treatment disciplines; collaborates with social agencies in preparing the ward and his family for his eventual release on furlough or parole; summarizes case material for case conferences; prepares and presents progress reports as required; participates in research projects; may train graduate social work students during field placements; may act as leadperson in the absence of the Supervising Casework Specialist; provides necessary in-depth qualitative technical review of casework services performed by Youth Correctional Counselors and teachers; consults with and advises the Senior Youth Correctional Counselor on the casework services being performed; prepares verbal, written, and statistical reports; participates as a trainer in training sessions, or as a significant member at meetings, committees, and conferences; makes significant casework and program assignment decisions on ward cases assigned; cooperates with field parole in developing parole plans for prospective parolees; prepares cases for the Youthful Offender Parole Board calendar; maintains order and supervises the conduct of persons committed to the Department of the Youth Authority; prevents escapes and injury by these persons to themselves or others or to property; maintains security of working areas and work materials; and inspects premises and searches wards, residents, or patients for contraband, such as weapons or illegal drugs.

Minimum Qualifications

Education: Completion of a two-year graduate curriculum in social work in an accredited school of social work. (Candidates who are enrolled in the final academic year of graduate work will be admitted to the examination, but they will not be appointed until they have completed the required education.)

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of: Principles, procedures, techniques, trends, and literature of social work with particular reference to casework and group work methods, and applying casework and group work techniques to the diagnosis and treatment of Youth Authority wards and residents; purposes, scope, and operation of correctional institutions with particular reference to institutional programs for youthful offenders; causes, nature, and results of delinquency; social aspects of mental and emotional disturbances and mental deficiency; normal and abnormal psychology and its application to the problems of delinquency.


Ability to: Apply casework and group work methods and techniques to the diagnosis and treatment of Youth Authority wards and residents; establish and maintain the confidence and cooperation of persons contacted in the work; secure accurate social data and record such data systematically; write clear, accurate, and concise reports and interpret statistical data; analyze situations accurately and adopt an effective course of action; communicate effectively.

Special Personal Characteristics

An objective and empathetic understanding of the problems of Youth Authority wards and residents; ability to work effectively in a correctional facility with wards of various racial, ethnic, and cultural differences; tolerance; tact; patience; and emotional stability, maturity, and integrity.

Special Physical Characteristics

Persons appointed to positions in this class must be reasonably expected to have and maintain sufficient strength, agility, and endurance to perform during stressful (physical, mental, and emotional) situations encountered on the job without compromising their health and well-being or that of their fellow employees or that of wards and residents. Assignments during tour of duty may include sole responsibility for the supervision of wards and residents and/or the protection of personal and real property.

Age Limitation

Minimum age for appointment is 21 years of age.

Peace Officer Standards

Citizenship Requirement: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1031(a), in order to be a peace officer, a person must be either a U.S. Citizen or be a permanent resident alien who is eligible for and has applied for U.S. Citizenship. Any permanent resident alien who is employed as a peace officer shall be disqualified from holding that position if his/her application for citizenship is denied.


Felony Disqualification: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1029, persons convicted of a felony are disqualified from employment as peace officers except as provided under Welfare and Institutions Code, Division 2, Chapter 3, Article 8, Section 1179(b), or Division 2.5, Chapter 1, Article 4, Section 1772(b). Except as provided for by these statutes, persons convicted of a felony are not eligible to compete for, or be appointed to, positions in this class.


Firearm Conviction Disqualification: Anyone who is restricted for employment-related purposes from accessing, possessing, carrying, receiving, or having under his/her control a firearm or ammunition under all applicable State or Federal laws is ineligible for appointment to any position in this classification.


Background Investigation: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1029.1, persons successful in peace officer examinations shall be required to undergo a thorough background investigation prior to appointment. Persons who have previously undergone a Youth Authority background investigation may be required to undergo only a partial background investigation.


Medical Requirement: Pursuant to Government Code Section 1031, persons appointed to a peace officer class shall undergo a medical examination to determine that he or she can perform the essential functions of the job safely and effectively.


Drug Testing Requirement: Applicants for positions in this class are required to pass a drug-screening test. (The drug-screening test will be waived for employees who are currently in a designated "sensitive" class for which drug testing is required under State Personnel Board Rule 213.)


Training Requirements: Under provisions of Penal Code Section 832, successful completion of a training course in laws of arrest, search and seizure, and in firearms and chemical agents is a requirement for permanent status in this classification.

  Updated: 6/3/2012
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